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One Potato, Two Potato



I've often wondered about the benefits of peeling teeny tiny potatoes to make dum aloo. Apart from the cuteness factor, there didn't seem to be much taste uptick versus a regular potato curry. Or so I thought. But then, a couple of weeks back, I went to this cooking competition where I was to cook a Bengali menu and got handed the recipe for aloor dum. Punchy and totally full of flavour, it's a dish I've been thinking of ever since. But I didn't bring back the recipe and I sort of forgot what all went in there so this is my own version. Think of it as the Punjabi curry counterpart of the aloor dum I made the other day. It's delicious nevertheless.

Ingredients
15-20 baby potatoes
3 tbsp ghee
1 bay leaf
2 whole red chillies
2 tbsp ginger paste
1/2 tsp hing powder
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 small onion, pureed
2 small tomatoes, chopped finely
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp yogurt
salt to taste

Boil the baby potatoes until almost cooked but with a bit of a bite left to them. At this time, take the yogurt out of the fridge and give it a stir. Peel the potatoes and prick all over with a fork. Heat 2 tbsp ghee in a nonstick pan and pop the potatoes in. Cook until the potatoes are lightly browned. Remove to a bowl and mix with 1 tbsp ginger paste, salt and 1/2 tsp chilli powder.

Add the remaining 1 tbsp ghee to the same pan and add the bay leaf and the whole red chillies. Also add in hing, cumin seeds, mustard seeds and coriander seeds. Stir until the spices start to pop, then add the onion and ginger pastes. Saute, stirring often, until the onion paste is completely dry and you see ghee oozing out at the sides. Add the turmeric powder, mix and saute for another 30 seconds. Now add the tomatoes and the tomato puree and saute until the tomatoes are all mushy. Add the reserved potatoes and stir well to mix the spices in.

Now add 1 cup water and bring the whole thing to a boil. Reduce the heat and let simmer for 5-7 minutes. Stir in the yogurt. Mix well, then let the pan simmer until most of the water has dried up and you have a nice spice coating on the potatoes. Check for seasoning, add more salt if required and remove to a serving dish. At this point, tradition dictates that you sprinkle the whole thing with chopped coriander leaves and garam masala. I went rogue though and used a sprinkle of dried mint, a punchy flavour addition to the mix.

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